7.31.2007

About A Bear
When my birthmom was pregnant with me, she made a white teddy bear for me. The intention was that the bear would go with me to my new home, would be a really sweet reminder that she loved me, was thinking of me.

Of course, I didn't know about this bear until 24 years later, when I found K and she told me about it. Here she'd thought that her wishes had been respected, that the bear had been passed along to me like she'd asked.

But no.

Where it ended up, I have no idea. I will say only this: to the people at my adoption agency who decided not to pass this gift along from a mother to her daughter, y'all are fuckers. And heartless bastards. Seriously.

Even when I dealt with them 24 years later when I started my search, they acted like I was asking too much to even inquire about my origins. That whole 'well, you have a nice family now, you shouldn't want to know anything else' mentality which is absolutely a bunch of horseshit. Not that they know for real, since they're only on the paperwork side of adoptions.

When I was searching for K, I wrote to the agency with a list of questions. This was beyond the non-identifying information that I was legally entitled to, but still the questions I asked vague enough to fall under that grey area. The woman who handled my request sat on it for months, MONTHS, then wrote back.

WOO HOO!! I thought, as I opened the envelope. Here are the answers that will get me one step closer to finding her.

Nope, those fuckers at the agency? They wanted money for this service now.

Had I known that from the start, I would have sent them double the first time, just to get my answers.

Anyway, about a month after that, they sent me answers to some of my questions, but not all. Apparently I had crossed the line between non-identifying and identifying so I got what I got. With those few answers (which included an apology -- they'd calculated K's age when I was born wrong, so all these years I'd thought she was a different age when I was born. Hi, when you have like 2 pieces of information about someone so key, yet so mysterious, in your life, you'd really like those bits to be correct. So next time, couldya check your math, please?) In the end, the answers to those questions weren't what led me to K.

It was the piece of paper my Dad had, that had instructions for feeding your baby. Under Baby's Name, that sheet, WHICH HAD BEEN IN MY PARENTS HOUSE THE ENTIRE TIME, it said "A___ N___."

That name matched up with the name of the baby I'd found on the birth index (i.e. that baby was me! OMG my name was once A___ N___!) and that single bit of information was the key to finding K and to finding answers to questions that had, in some ways, always driven me. Some of the info the fuckers from the agency (FFTA) sent me did help, once I passed this point, but not much.

In the end, I hired a PI to track down the rest of the information because the last step was to essentially call people and lie about being a distant cousin doing a family tree to figure out if these unsuspecting people's families matched up to the non-identifying information that I had. I had things like 'siblings a and b were ages x and y when you were born, so it was finding out if the family we suspected was them matched that.

It took my searcher 2 phone calls to get to that point and get enough information about K that she found her address and phone number the next day. When my grandmother T hung up the phone after talking to my searcher, she turned to grandfather T and said "I think that was her."

I could not not not make those calls myself because it was essentially lying to them (for a good cause) and I was not okay with my first contact with the family being a lie. I suppose hiring the PI was a technicality, that the lie still went on but I'm pretty sure the family forgives me for that now.

So when I finally met K later that year, one of the things she asked me about was that bear. What bear? I said. I didn't get a bear.

FFTA. Where was that bear? Passed on to the social worker's own kid? Left in a box somewhere?

Seriously, y'all are heartless bastards for not passing that on.

I mention all this because...

When we came home from that loooong week in the hospital last year when Val was born, there was a package on our front porch.

It was a white bear that K had sent.


Bear and Val at 3 months.

Bear and Val at 14 months

Proof


IMG00283.JPG
Originally uploaded by gadgetgrrl
That she LOVES the bike. Yesterday was no different, bike bike bike all day.

7.30.2007

I'm Sure I Blew This, Somehow
But, at this very moment, I am delivering files that are part of a Big (for me) Project that's sucked my soul for the last few weeks. This marks the first time I took on something that involved not just our regular xml coding, but added javascript and a shitload of fancypants css stuff as well.

The crazy go nuts thing is that I did the majority of the work myself. And, when I did ask for help, I asked the right people.

I'm sure this means that I'll come in tomorrow to a thousand bugs with it. But as of right now, I'm feeling pretty damn good. And tired.

That's A Little Personal, Don't Ya Think?
Saturday we were eating a rather underwhelming lunch at CPK when a family sits down next to us. The Dad smiles at Val, then for his first question: "are you going to have any more?"

Yes, that beats the shit out of stupid race-based comments but wow, that's kinda so not your business and especially not for your first question!

We just asked him if he was going to have any more and left it at that.

Still SO Good
They Might Be Giants' song Turn Around STILL gets me going, 15 years after it found me. So much so that I had to listen to it twice just now.

I saw them in concert once. They played all their regular songs, then a random request from the crowd -- I Wanna Be Sedated by the Ramones. Imagine that song with an accordion and I tell you, the good times just don't get much better than that.

A Goal, A Short Bench And A Bike
I'll start with the goal, because in many ways it was the highlight of my weekend. The Burninators scrimmaged against another local team and like last time, we had a blast. Unlike last time, I somehow found myself with a scoring opportunity. I ran down from the point to catch a loose puck, took a shot. Missed. There was a nice rebound on my shot so I kept going (this is SO not my style, I usually take one shot then go back to the blue line, where I belong) toward the net. I got the rebound, took another shot. That hit the goalie and created yet another rebound, which magically came to my stick (it must have heard me say, please come to my stick).

This time, I find myself at the left post, close into the net (huh?? I PLAY RIGHT D. This is about the last place I should be, but okay, because...) and there's a huge hole where the goalie was a second ago.

For one of the first times ever, I was able to get my shit together and throw the puck right into that empty space. Bam! MY FIRST BURNINATOR GOAL EVER!!!

The team was kind enough to follow our tournament goal-scoring plan, where you go by the bench for a row of high fives. That was SO badass, being the one getting the high fives instead of just giving them out.

And now the bike.

Saturday before the game, we went over to Sue and Sarah's to check out a play structure that needed a new home. It's totally perfect for Val, and for the girls too. We're trying to figure out which size moving van to rent so we don't have to take the whole thing apart to get it home. But it's great and I'm stoked for Val that she'll have this great place to play. And I'm stoked for me because I have a serious moral objection to buying those big plastic things brand new. A win, all around.

We hung out inside their playroom for a bit, where Val discovered this little bike for kids just her size. It's sort of everything I don't like in a toy -- all plastic-ey and makes a shitload of noise. So of course, Val fell IN LOVE with this bike.

I mean love. Moreso than her love for her little garden or her Elmo doll, is this bike. She sat on it for a long time at Sue and Sarah's, then when we got it home, would not get up off it. 25 minutes IN A ROW she sat there, pushing the buttons and giggling at her handiwork.

Last night, she tried to take it to her highchair and have dinner with it. It is, so far, the Best Toy Ever and I could not be more grateful for this gift.

And now the short bench. The A-Team 2 played yet another game with a ridiculously short bench last night -- this time it was a whopping 7 people. It can either suck, or be kind of fun to have that few people. We got lucky, it ended up being fun. Red was kind enough to fill in as goalie (um, wow. He's gotten *really* *superass* *good* in the net. His handiwork kept us in it.) Somehow (thanks to Red) we pulled off a tie. And I had a great time, even if my wet elbow pads gave me a rather large, unsightly rash.

That, folks, is my weekend.

7.25.2007

Speaking Of Neurotic Travel Fretting
I'm proud to say that I finally have enough carseat accessories in Val's travel carseat bag that I can install the thing in any car, anywhere, especially when I don't have Susan available to check my work.

Here's the rundown of products I keep in the bag. I'm only linking to them because some of you might want to know more.:

  • Britax Roundabout in Jefferson Tan. It's like it was made for us!
  • Mighty Tite (this is for emergencies only -- where I have to use a seatbelt to install instead of LATCH for some reason. I know it gets mixed reviews and not every tech says it's the best thing to use but shit, if it's a choice between a loose install in a strange car and a tight one using this device, that's really no choice at all.)
  • Pool noodle cut to the width of the seat base. This is to adjust the angle of the seat -- it's supposed to be 45 degrees rear-facing.
  • Underseat mat This is to grip the seat a little better, hopefully reducing slippage. Note: the carseat tech in our family pointed out that you DON'T want one of these to be padded since the extra padding could compress in an accident when the seatbelt/latch/carseat should be doing that compression to keep your kiddo safe.
  • Rubber mat for lining a kitchen drawer. This also helps with grippiness. I probably won't use this now since we got the extra underseat mat, but I'm leaving it in the bag anyway.
Maybe all this sounds like overkill but when I think about how that kid backed into us recently, and how Val's carseat was well-installed and used properly. She didn't even wake up when we were hit. If anything worse ever happens, I want to know that I took the time and went to the effort to keep my baby girl safe.

I'm lucky in many ways, and one of them is around carseats. Not every family sees a properly installed/used carseat as a huge priority for their kid. Whatever the reason, I just don't agree. And I'm glad as hell that Andrea feels the same way. I know, when I put it like that, it does seem a no-brainer but a lot of people would rather save money or are too proud to have a tech check their installs.

What that's all about, I dunno. I'm just glad that in our family, all seats are installed and used properly, with no argument about how fucking important it is.

And if you've got a carseat, next time you go out to your car, please take a minute to attempt to shake the base side-to-side. It should move less than an inch, preferably a lot less. I do this every couple of weeks and once I did find that it had gotten a bit loose. Not a week after that, we were hit.

That sure turned into a PSA!

Big Adventure
I think it's safe to post about this now, since all who are going to find out about this are on their way to the Big Surprise.

My parents are on their way to Europe right now. Thanks to my uncle's wild generosity, they're flying first class (I only mention this out of sheer jealousy and fond fond memories of our business class upgrade from Seattle - Tokyo that remains the most excellent, badass air travel experience of my life). They'll also be enjoying some great accommodations and seeing some Fabulous Things.

The trip's purpose is to celebrate my aunt's birthday. And so I say to you, Happy Birthday!

As you might imagine, my folks have been prepping for this trip for a while. There's the buying of new clothes for nice dinners, the getting of passports and of course the stressing about the unknown minutiae. Which I totally get, as I sit here worrying about how many snacks to bring to entertain a 14 month old on a plane, will we get the fridge at the hotel, will we have enough milk available for her, will I be able to install the carseat without issue, blah blah you know that sort of thing.

Anyhoo, the true highlight of this fretting is the following, from my Dad: Italy is FULL of pickpockets!

I told him the best defense against a nation of pickpockets is to leave all your valuables and your cash in the hotel safe. This might make it hard to score lunch, but hey, you'd be safe from the pickpockets!

I hope they have a fantabulous trip and return from Italy with their wallets intact.

7.23.2007

A Little More About Our Trip
Since Andrea mentioned some of this already, I feel okay saying this. I really really fucking hope that Andrea's mom realizes two things after our trip:
  • That Andrea is seriously a fantastic person and by not being so good about being in touch with her all that often, she's really really fucking missing out on a special person.
  • That Valerie is equally fantastic, though in a different way.
That is all people, that is all.

More About The Race Thing
The more we hear from Susan about That Woman At The Pool (TWATP, boy didn't that work out nicely?) we're getting it, that she's really not the norm. Because the norm, i.e. Most People know better how to keep their mouths shut.

So I guess we should be grateful to TWATP for bringing the fact that throughout her life, people without tact will say shit that makes me bristle. Again, I don't have the knowledge and experienced gained by being someone who is not white, so I'm pretty much always going to err on the side of caution on Val's behalf. Somewhere between the mom who bristles too early and the mom who lets it roll off her back, maybe that's where Val's comfort level with the idiot comments will wind up.

Our compromise is that rather than saying she's Asian-American (because, the more I think about it, the more that sounds like a Chinese family, not a blended one like ours) we're going to say she's half-Chinese. Which works because she, in fact, is half-Chinese.

But I don't think I'll give that phrase up all that easily. I was brought up to think that pointing out differences was rude and though that way of thinking has no doubt neglected to give me a lot of real-world dialogue about people's differences, it has given me a set of manners that I like, most of the time. Obviously, I have strayed from this guideline more than once in my life, it always ended with hurt feelings or embarrassment.

Something tells me that this isn't the end of this topic.

7.17.2007

Did You Know You Said That Out Loud?
Part 87.

Yesterday, Susan had all the girls at Sam and Riley's swimming lessons. Now, as you may have guessed, swimming lessons include Interaction With The Public. And for most members of the public at the pool, they're too busy wrangling their own kiddos to pay much attention to other people and the children who might be with them.

But not this one lady. (There's always one, isn't there???) Last week she saw Val there with Susan and the girls and instantly became puzzled. One of these things, in her mind, was not like the others.

How it smarts to write that, even though it's sort of witty, knowing that the child who stood out was my daughter. I spent a lot of my growing-up years being the kid who stood out and should be shunned for reasons I still don't quite grasp. Was it the sarcasm? Was it because my family drove a giant sedan instead of a station wagon? Was it because I didn't dress like all the other girls, no matter how hard I tried?

I still, to this day have no clue. But I will tell you that never in my life since have I been so broken down and so mortified as the day in 8th grade when I set my lunch down with some 'friends' and went to get a drink, only to return to find that those 'friends' had moved to another table. Where I wasn't wanted. Bitches, I'll never forget and if I was cattier I'd put your names right here for all the google to find. But I'm not, I'm just now a mom who remembers that feeling and would do just about anything to prevent her baby girl from ever feeling that way for a goddamn nanosecond.

So when I heard of This Woman asking Susan questions about my daughter -- 'are they all yours (i.e. why are your two older kids white and your younger kid not all white?)' last week, she got off easy. Bill was there and explained that they're cousins.

That satisfied Mrs. Ignoramus for a while. When I showed up the next day thanks to a well-taken opportunity to sneak out of work early, I'm sure Mrs. Ignoramus got even more confused, like what was that lesbian doing with that baby?

So much so that she once again asked Susan about Val. 'Is she yours?' 'No, she's my niece.'

'Oh, I thought she looked like a mix.'

A MIX? Is my daughter kool-aid? Is she a mutt? (Though we lovingly referred to Gus as mixed-breed, but that seems appropriate for a dog, no?)

So I'm here struggling for the appropriate response. Because I guess unless we want to give people like Mrs. Ignoramus license to make dumbass/borderline racist comments we've got to come up with something, our pat family answer that stops the idiotspeak, or at least slows it down.

So far the best I can come up with is 'Yes, her family is Asian-American.' This can be followed up with 'Her parents are Chinese and white' should additional questions arise.

But I really don't get this at all. Mrs. Ignoramus lives in an area where there are tons of Asian-American families, of all varieties (both parents Asian, one parent Asian, you get my drift). I'm sure that Valerie is not the only half-Chinese child she's ever seen and I'm positive that her kids attend school with a good number of kids like Val.

So why even make that comment at all?

And again, I gripe about all this for a couple of reasons:

  1. Because my white skin gives me a different kind of experience than Andrea has or Val will have. Because I've been spoken to in the secret language of white people and this lady (and those like her who are sure to follow in the coming years) was speaking that language to Susan. About my daughter.

    I will consider myself a failure as a parent if I can't at least make people think twice before speaking that language about or around any part of our little family. Maybe people who grew up dealing with this sort of shit are used to it and would just roll their eyes and sigh, saying yep, that lady's a dufus allright. But I didn't grow up with that and it will always make me bristle.

  2. Because we owe it to Val to have more appropriate language and terms ready to share with people. Ideally, she'll be prepared to respond in a way that's right for her using this language or whatever she finds most appropriate.
So, once again, I am stunned that the people you meet on the street are by and large more interested in the fact that Val is half-Chinese than the fact that she's got two moms. I think that says something and I'm not quite sure what exactly that is.

Gratuitous Picture Du Jour

7.14.2007

What Are We, 15?
Remember this guy? Well, he's serenading us with heavy metal from the 80's. Over the last two days, he's had his video games at full blast and now there's seriously loud metal music.

A year ago, I called the cops on him (because he seems a little too much of a loose cannon to actually approach person-to-person. The cops talked to him for a longass time and whatever they said totally worked because for many moons (well, about 12) he stopped being a shitty neighbor.

Apparently whatever they said also had a time limit. Lucky for us, once she's asleep, Val actually sleeps through a lot of stuff.

That doesn't stop me from being annoyed by it, though.

7.11.2007

A Million Bits Of Nothing/Traveling With Small Child
Aside from the recurrence of my shoulder injury, which, I can assure you, is a thousand bits of fun in every bite, there's not a whole hell of a lot going on around here. And thus, not a whole hell of a lot that I can share with you people.

But in the interests of keeping the three of you interested, I'll drum up some topics.

Lessee... next month, we're taking Val and going on a number of airplanes. That number of airplanes, it is 5. That coincides with the number of cities we'll be going through, thanks to the miracle of us saving about $300 per ticket on this trip. The joy I'll feel wrangling her on 5 flights between 5 cities, well, I'm so excited about that bit of my future that I've already started gathering Items To Entertain Her.

Here's my list, in case you're wondering:

  • Large Ziploc bag full of smaller ziploc bags.
  • Inside those smaller ziploc bags, I will place a wide variety of snacks and other items that are interesting to toddlers:
    • Goldfish crackers
    • Raisins*
    • Baby ball crackers
    • Pirate's Booty (not the recalled veggie variety)
    • Dried blueberries*
    • Itty bitty Ritz crackers with cheese*
    • Wrapped saltines
    • Wrapped rice krispie treats
    • Wrapped straws. These I've already started pilfering from Starbucks, 3 straws at a time.

      * These items may contain moisture. Moisture makes some overzealous TSA agents REALLY EXCITED about searching your carry-on so the moist items will be declared separately at the x-ray doohickie.

  • Possibly a portable DVD player. I can't find my old one and I keep getting outbid on new ones, but I haven't given up hope on either finding my old one or possibly getting a good deal on a new one. Worst case scenario, we can rent one for the first 2 flights. We've stocked up on Elmo DVDs so I feel like we should at least try to get the 'baby watches the movie' program going.
  • Toys. But the weird thing about toys is that they only seem to interest her at home. I know, you're thinking, duh, that makes total sense, given that the airplane is filled with New Things. And you're right.
  • Bottles of cow's milk. She's down to 2-3 bottles a day (and yes, for the next week or so, one of those is still breastmilk thanks to my mighty stash of hard-earned frozen milk) and though some experts would say we should really push her to give that shit up and just drink from a cup, we're ignoring them. Because she still gets comfort from it, the bottles are a big part of our mostly-effective nighttime routine and because we know we have two giant trips coming this summer. Why fuck with her routine ny more than we're already going to be doing?

    Maybe after we return from Trip #2, if she hasn't lost interest on her own, we'll think about pushing the issue. But probably not. She seems to move on to/from things in her own time without a lot of drama. That's more our speed.

I welcome your suggestions on additional things to bring (many of these ideas were taken from things You Nice People have written on the same subject and I am grateful for the tips). Or not bring.

This first trip will be the Visit Everyone In Both Of Our Families Tour, 2007. Or VEIBOOFT! We'll get to introduce Val to her Grandparents Who Live in China (but are visiting the US) and the rest of Andrea's family who has yet to meet her. That's the first leg of VEIBOOFT. We'll have a brief visit to Elmo's Home, then a few days with my family, where Val will also get to meet her Great-Grandparents, one of her uncles, and visit with be doted on by both sets of her grandparents on my side.

I'm sort of exhausted just thinking about it. But excited too.

And hurting for a good closing line to this post. So I'll just say VEIBOOFT to you!

7.09.2007

One Year
That is apparently how long it takes for my shoulder injury to repeat itself. I had hoped that being out from hockey for a year would be long enough to actually heal it. But no.

The injury has returned and it's more painful than it was the first (or second) time around. In hunting for the link to the original post about the original injury, I discovered that it happened in 2003. 4 years ago. Crap, that's sort of a long time.

I'm loading up on Advil and making the most of our ice packs but I'm getting the point -- that's not enough. I don't know if I'm going to try another round of PT on it or maybe it's time to talk to some nice surgeon about my options.

Whatever I do, I'd really like to be free from this pain so I'm hoping the path I choose gives me that.

I talked to my Dad about the injury. He goes: "you'll just have to give up hockey." Dad? Have we met?

That? Not an option. So I'm off to find a doc to talk about Plan B with.

7.05.2007

Mellow Holiday
I know, you're totally shocked that we didn't do a whole hell of a lot for a holiday. Since that's totally us, going all-out for the holidays. Oh wait, that's someone else.

We slept in, then tried to take Val to see Surf's Up, only to discover that we'd gone to the wrong theater. Argh! We wound up at a playground instead. Val had a blast running through the water (after we discovered that hot pavement is NOT OKAY on toddler feet, sorry kiddo!)

We went home and Andrea finally took down the fish tank, while I headed out to the movies all by myself. There's not a lot playing so I picked Away From Her, which was this sad but sweet film about a man who puts his wife into a care facility when her Alzheimer's dictates that it's time. The place has a 30 day no-visitors policy and in that 30 days, his wife sort of decides that this man who lives there is her husband now. So when the 30 days is up, the husband comes back to see his wife of 44 years taking care of some other man.

So much heartbreak, but it was still sweet in a way.

After the movie, Andrea continued her flurry of home improvements and installed the a/c unit in our bedroom. We'd bought it back in May, before the heat wave. Because, what do you know, it's easier to find a/c units before it's really hot.

I tell you this, a/c is magic. Absolutely magic.

Despite the magic, I didn't sleep all that well. I lay half-awake, imagining 7000 horrible things, writing blog posts in my head, then finally giving in and trying to figure out which neighborhood school Val would go to, should we not put her in the private Chinese school we like.

That was even more depressing. Because we're in a very small unincorporated area, our local school serves kids K-8 who live in that non-city area. Because that school serves our neighborhood, it's basically an ESL school, focusing on improving the English skills of the students.

And, demographically, there are no Asian kids. None.

Even if the ESL thing wasn't such a focus, I'd really struggle to have her be the only (part) Asian kid in a school. That just seems like too much to ask.

I know, this is all still a few years away. But if those years go anywhere near as fast as this last year has gone, I'm really not thinking about this too early.

While I was not sleeping, I was missing Val like crazy. Even though she was only 10 feet away in her crib, I was lonely. So when she woke up and cried at 6:30 I was happy to have her come back to our bed and curl up into me, sucking on her little pacifier in the early morning light.

7.03.2007

You Are Not Gonna Believe This
But this afternoon, Val has peed in her own little potty not once but twice! We bought it last week just for the hell of it. We figured that she likes to sit on things and she likes to clap so why not combine the two?

She'd sat on it a number of times but today I got the timing right. Plunked her on it right after her nap and about 2 seconds later, there was this little pssst and sure enough.

VAL PEED IN THE POTTY!

About an hour later, she was still dry so I took her back in and we tried again. And again, she came through! I'm totally sure that it's just a case of good timing but who cares because Val peed in the potty. Twice.

I have no illusion that she'll actually be potty trained early. We're just going to try to hit as much of the good timing as possible and see what happens.

I haven't changed a dirty diaper in 5 hours. That's something.

Thanks, Annie
A song from Annie Lennox's album Medusa is on my ipod now and thanks to the miracle of the random shuffle that brought it to my ears, I give you the following trip down memory lane.

My senior year in college, I was 2500 miles from home and in a failing relationship I'd moved all that way to pursue. (Yes, of course, I know now that it wasn't wise on a lot of levels to follow that girl but in the end I met Andreatan and well, now we have Valerie and by way of all that, it was worth it.) I lived with M in Salem, OR but moved to Eugene after she dumped my ass for someone less attractive and more married.

In a hurry, I'd moved. I was sansabed, had pretty much nothing to my name save 2 box turtles and some CDs, including this Annie Lennox one that I listened to a lot. I rented a room in a hurry from a very nice dyke in Eugene because I didn't want to be sleeping on the couch while my now-ex slept with her new gf in what used to be our bed.

I'm sensitive like that.

So I'd rented this room, dumped my meager possessions and headed back east for spring break. Somehow, me and Zawod went to Washington DC for a conference of some sort (I didn't care, I just wanted a break from all the heartache). We went to some gay bar where I met this nice-seeming woman who was going to take me and Zawod out to eat. I was young, it didn't seem unwise to me to just go with someone I'd just met so I said sure!

We headed outside of the bar to wait for the chippie to bring her car around. And waited. And waited. But she never came.

Boy, did I feel like the master of the ladies at that point, standing outside in the rain waiting for someone I didn't really know.

I returned to my rented room in Eugene. Apparently, I'd given the chippie the phone number at the nice dyke's house and she'd called to explain.

I never called her back. Whatever the reason she had, it wouldn't be enough to cover the deficit she'd left in my pride.

The ipod's playing Eminem now. Thank god we've moved on.

7.02.2007

Too Much Weekend In My Weekend
In a good way, of course. Friday night my maroon team played and holy shit! We actually won, second time in a week. Viv is totally on a hot streak and she scored two goals that night. Woo! Go Viv! Go us! That game marked a year since my triumphant hockey return and I must say that I'm still just thrilled to be back on the ice.

My gear was still wet on Saturday when the Burninators scrimmaged against another local team. Wet gear or no, I think everyone had a good time. I'll be trying to set more of those up -- it was super nice to Burninate without having to get on a plane first.

Sunday, I had 2 more games, both co-ed. The first was at noon. Noon is really a horrible time for a game. Sort of like the morning, sort of not. We played well but got our asses kicked anyway. Phoo. Later, at 7:15, I had another game and the little team that never wins actually won! We got our first win!!!

I am tired and have some major rugburn looking patches on my elbows and knees from wearing wet gear but I had a great time.

In related news, I have lost enough of the baby weight that my feet have returned to close enough to their former size that I could once again wear my beloved slightly-smaller hockey skates. It was like a hug from an old friend to wear them again. I'm so damn happy about this. And now, I guess I have a hardly-used pair of backup skates...